SIN Latam Newsletter July .pdf

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July 2015

BRAZIL: Kew Gardens hold Digital Amazon Workshop
Royal Botanical Gardens Kew held a “Digital Amazon” Workshop to
agree research parameters for the priceless Amazon ethnobotanic
collection of British botanist, Richard Spruce, kept at Kew & the British
Museum. Six top Brazilian ethnobotanists and six UK experts from Kew
and Birbeck College attended the workshop between 13-15 July,
financed by BIS‟s Global Partnership Fund. Sir Ghilean Prance, Worldclass taxonomist and botanist specialising in the Amazo=n provided
expert advice alongside renowned explorer, John Hemming, who also
delivered a presentation on his new book “Naturalists in Paradise:
Wallace, Bates and Spruce in the Amazon” encompassing the journeys
of these three 19th Century British explorers. Dr Julia Knights, Director
of SIN Brazil delivered a presentation on the Newton Fund. Outputs from
the workshop include a digital archive of the British Museum‟s Richard
Spruce collection announced & presented by Dr Jago Cooper, Curator &
Head of the Americas at the British Museum. A report on the group‟s
agreed research questions, methodology for creating the data sets &
timeline for submitting research proposals will soon be submitted by the
workshop organisers - Dr William Milken, Research leader for Diversity &
Livelihoods at Kew joint with Mark Nesbitt, Head of Kew‟s Ethnobotany
collection & Dr Luciana Martins, Co-Director for the Centre for Iberian
and Latin American Visual Studies of Birbeck, University of London.

BRAZIL: Newton launches digitisation of Kew’s Brazilian
plant collection in Rio
A launch of phase II of the “Reflora” project, the digital repatriation of
Royal Botanical Garden - Kew‟s Brazilian Plant Collection took place at
the Rio Botanical Gardens on the 25th June.
Funded by the UK government‟s Newton Fund, this second phase of the
project aims to digitally repatriate 20,000 species of Brazilian plants from
Kew‟s herbarium for the Rio Botanical Gardens virtual herbarium. Kew‟s
unique collection contains plants collected by Charles Darwin. To date
100 new plant species have been discovered and 200 joint research
papers with Kew have been published since the Reflora project started in
2008. Reflora is also enabling Brazil to meet its obligations under the
Convention on Biological Diversity. It also enables improvement in the
quality of biodiversity data available to scientists and policy-makers
internationally. The launch was organised by SIN-Brazil‟s Newton team in
conjunction with British Council, Kew, CNPq, & Rio botanical gardens
with strong media coverage across Brazil. In Brazil, SIN-Brazil‟s Newton
Team has strategic oversight of the £27 Million of Newton Fund and
works to create strong long-term science & innovation partnerships
between the delivery partners of both UK & Brazil. In its first year, SIN
Brazil negotiated match funding of a further £27 M from the Brazilian
government. In its second year in Brazil, the Newton Fund has already
been used to deliver funds to over 1,222 UK and Brazilian grant holders
in neglected diseases, climate change and public health.
Links for more information: here and here


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BRAZIL: UK’s Science Museum Group & Rio’s Museum of
Tomorrow sign partnership
The UK‟s Science Museum Group and Rio de Janeiro‟s Museum of
Tomorrow have signed a letter of intent to partner in exhibitions and staff
exchanges. The partnership was celebrated during the Seminar
“Museums and its Audiences” promoted by the British Council‟s
“Transform” Programme, on the 26th of June in Rio. Eric Klug, Acting
director of British Council in Brazil & Consul General Jonathan Dunn
witnessed the signing. At the event Jean Franczyk, Deputy Director of
the UK‟s Science Museum Group, delivered a dynamic lecture to an
audience of around 200 on how the Science Museum Group engage the
public in science through inspiring, engaging and memorable learning
experiences with their core mission to “help people make sense of
science in our lives”. Jean also outlined the Science Museum Group‟s
touring contemporary exhibitions such as their “Blueprints” and the large
scale exhibitions such as “Collider”. After the launch, SIN Brazil
accompanied Jean to visit the director of Rio‟s Museum of Life to explore
further collaboration opportunities.
Links for more information: here and here

BRAZIL: Innovation is GREAT lecture on Social Ecological
Prof Jon Lovett, Chair in Global Challenges at the School of Geography
at the University of Leeds delivered a lecture on social ecological
systems in the second of SIN-Brazil‟s Innovation is GREAT lectures in
Brasilia. In his lecture this June, Prof Lovett outlined how increasingly we
are looking to ecology to solve global issues rather than superimposing
technologies. Mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions, bioenergy, watersensitive design & green bridges were discussed with a lively audience of
over 60 professors and students at the University of Brasilia. An
outcome is that Prof Lovett aims to return in the autumn to deliver a
module of lectures on the topic to students at the University. Prof Jon
Lovett is also a visiting professor at the Royal Botanical Gardens Kew.

COLOMBIA & PARAGUAY: Launch of Agri-tech project at
the Milan Expo
The FCO‟s “Increasing Food Security and agricultural competiveness in
Colombia & Paraguay” (IFSec) Prosperity Fund project was launched
during Britain Agritech week at the Milan Expo on 10th July. An
audience of British and Colombian agricultural companies and
organisations attended the launched at the Colombian Pavilion. Wyn
Cudlip from the UK‟s Satellite Applications Catapult delivered a speech
on the benefits of using satellite imagery in agriculture. Whilst Pascual
Martinez, advisor to ProColombia shared statistics on Colombian
Agriculture and the opportunities for foreign companies to do business in
Colombia. Andrew Jackson, Head of the FCO‟s Science, Innovation and
Climate Department, Juan Pablo Cavelier, Pavilion Colombian
Ambassador and Mrs Gomez de Lievano, Colombian Consul for Milan
also attended. The British Embassy in Bogota participated in the Britain
Agri-tech week between 6-10 July to promoted a raft of opportunities in
Link for more information


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BRAZIL: Innovation is GREAT in Manaus
SIN Brazil‟s UKTI Innovation Manager, Angelica Garcia, participated in
two of Brazil‟s main startup events to promote the UK‟s expertise in start
ups and accelerators. In Manaus, Angelica mentored teams during the
Startup Weekend at the Samsung Ocean. This event‟s goal was to help
entrepreneurs internationally to transform ideas into startups. In Sao
Jose do Rio Preto Angelica also delivered a lecture to students and the
local community at Paulista University about the role of accelerators
during the development of a Startup.

MEXICO: British Ambassador to Mexico publishes Article
on SIN Activities

MEXICO: Joining Efforts to Engage Researchers
Community and Private Sector

Mexico‟s prestigious paper, Excelsior Global, has published an article on
new collaboration opportunities under the Newton Fund and its link to
SIN Mexico‟s science projects written by British Ambassador to Mexico,
Duncan Taylor. The article included success stories and impacts from UK
Mexico science collaborations.

CONACYT, INADEM, British Council and Innovate UK shared best
practices, knowledge, and research and development procedures at a
raft of events coordinated by Mexico‟s Newton Team in London 8-10
July. An event on the Newton Fund Institutional Links project
strengthened bilateral links and identified synergies amongst work
groups. Innovate UK and CONACyT also coordinated a meeting
between enterprises and research centres of Mexico and UK to
encourage their participation in the Mexico-UK Collaborative Industrial
R&D Competition.

Link for the article (in Spanish)

The UK government’s Newton Fund has a new website!
The Newton Fund is a UK government Official Development Assistance
(ODA) fund aimed at promoting social and economical development in 15
different host countries through Science and Innovation initiatives.
Newton Fund activities need to clearly demonstrate that they are aiming
to contribute to a reduction in poverty towards sustainable development
(development that is likely to generate lasting benefits for the population
of the country to which it is provided) or improve the welfare of the
population of Newton Fund countries.
For more info visit our new website at

BRAZIL: CONFAP and UK Academies Second Round
Call: Fellowships; Research Mobility and Young
Investigator Awards for UK researches
The National Council of Brazilian State Funding Agencies (CONFAP)
invites researchers from UK Universities and Research Institutions to
spend between two weeks to four years working in Brazil. The call
offers a Fellowships Scheme and a Research Mobility scheme. In
addition, the São Paulo State Funding Agency (FAPESP) is offering
Young Investigator Awards to start a research career in a university or
research institution in the State of São Paulo. These awards offer an
opportunity for the UK researcher to develop the strengths and
capabilities of their research groups through training, collaboration and
reciprocal visits with a partner in some of the best research groups in
the Brazil. Application deadline: 23 October.
Link for more information

BRAZIL: Technology Innovation Projects Funding

MEXICO: Launch of £6 M Collaborative Industrial R&D

The programme SENAI SESI of Innovation funds technology innovation
projects. Enterprises from all sizes can submit their applications for the
40 million reais fund to development new products, processes and
services to enhance productivity and competitiveness of Brazilian
enterprises. All projects need to be implemented in partnership with the
Regional departments of SENAI, or SESI or SENAI/CETIQT. Innovate
UK is a partner for this funding opportunity.

A £6m Newton Fund programme on enabling high-impact R&D
collaborations to tackle global challenges was launched on 25 June
between Mexico and the UK. Innovate UK and CONACYT are the
delivery partners. Primarily focused on companies, substantial grants
are available ranging from £500 K to £1 Million for the development of
new technologies, products, services and solutions to challenges in
three key sectors: energy, health and agri-tech. Innovate UK and
CONACYT hosted a B2B event in London on 10 July to encourage UK
Mexico partnership applications. Deadline: 14 October @ 12.00.

Applications can be submitted until the 7th of December here

Link for more information


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MEXICO: Newton International Fellowships

MEXICO: Newton Advanced Fellowships

The scheme provides the opportunity for the best early stage postdoctoral researchers from all over the world to work at UK research
institutions for a period of two years. The scheme covers a broad range
of the natural, physical, and social sciences, and the humanities and is
jointly run by The British Academy, The Academy of Medial Sciences and
the Royal Society. Newton Fellowships last for two years. Funding
consists of £24,000/ year for subsistence costs, and up to £8,000/year
research expenses, as well as a one-off payment of up to £2,000 for
relocation expenses. Deadline for applications: 9 September.

The second round of Newton Advanced Fellowships aims at supporting
early to mid-career (up to 15 years post-PhD) researchers from the UK
in their career development, covering all fields of the Natural Sciences
and Engineering, Medical Sciences, Social Sciences and Humanities.
The award enables international researchers based in a country
covered by the Newton Fund to establish and develop collaborations
with the UK with the intention of transferring knowledge and research
capabilities. Deadline for applications: 16 September.
Links for more information: here and here

Link for more information

MEXICO: Newton Mobility Grants

MEXICO: Researcher Links Call is now open

These grants provide support for international researchers based in a
country covered by the Newton Fund to establish and develop
collaboration with UK researchers around a specific jointly defined
research project. These one-year awards are particularly suited to initiate
new collaborative partnerships, between scholars who have not
previously worked together, or new initiatives between scholars who
have collaborated in the past. The main purpose of the funding is to
cover travel and maintenance costs, although costs related to other
eligible activities will be considered. Deadline for applications: 16

This month the call for Researcher Links Workshops has been
launched. Financed under the Newton Fund through the British Council
and Mexico‟s CONACyT, the aim is to bring together early-career
researchers from the UK and Mexico to make international connections
that can improve research quality of their projects. The purpose of this
grant is to tackle global challenges such as extreme weather conditions,
urbanisation, access to affordable health care, food and energy security
and meeting the social and economic needs of a growing population.
Deadline for applications: 28 September.
Link for more information

Link for more information

PERU: UK and Peru Researcher Links Programme
Tackling global challenges, such as extreme weather conditions, urbanisation, access to affordable health care, food and energy security and meeting
the social and economic needs of a growing population requires an integrated research and innovation approach. This will encompass bringing together
communities from different disciplines, sectors and countries in high-quality collaborations. The Researcher Links Programme aims to build UK-Partner
country research and innovation collaborations centred on these shared research and innovation challenges which have direct relevance to both
countries‟ economic development, under two different mechanisms:



Researcher Links Workshops aim to enhance and support international development relevant research, contribute to capacity building of
early career researchers, and establish new research links or significantly develop existing links, with the potential for longer term
Researcher Links Travel Grants aim to allow early-career researchers make international connections that can improve the quality of their
research, visiting an institution in the UK or vice versa, strengthen links for future collaboration, build research capacity in developing
economies, and enhance the researcher's career opportunities.
The Researcher Links Programme in Peru is funded by the FCO through the British Embassy in Lima, and implemented by the British
Council. The calls are currently open. For enquiries or more information, please send an email to:

Links for more information: here and here.

BRAZIL: “Building Bridges with the Future” in Recife

COLOMBIA: Agriculture and Livestock Event
Exposition at Expo Agrofuturo
Innovation, Knowledge and Sustainability are the three topics of the
largest Colombian agricultural exhibition in Colombia will take place in
Medellin between 19-21 August. Over 17000 attendees specialised in
agriculture and livestock will attend. The Expo will feature both academic
and commercial sections. The UK‟s Satellite Applications Catapult and
Manchester University will deliver a talk about technology at the event
and a delegation of UK companies will have stands.

A “Building Bridges with the Future” conference will take place at Cabo
do Santo Agostinho, in Recife between 24-26 August. Organised by the
Brazilian National Association for Research and Development of
Innovative Enterprises (Anpei), the event will involve workshops on
competitiveness, a Ted Talk on the Digital Revolution and Big Data, and
trans-nacionalisation of Brazilian enterprises.
Link for more info (in Portuguese)

Link for more information


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BRAZIL: “Light, Science and Life” Week, Brasilia

COLOMBIA: Startup Summit, Bogota

“Light, Science and Life” will be the theme of Brazil‟s 12th National
Science and Technology Week during 19-25 October. The theme is
based on the United Nations General Assembly Resolution declaring
2015 the year of „light‟. The website for more information on the week will
be released on the 1st of August. UK universities and science institutions
are welcome to apply to participate between 1 Aug -1 Sept. More details
to follow in the August edition of our SIN Latam Newsletter.

The Startup Summit on 17 September is Colombia‟s annual meeting
point for Colombian investors with entrepreneurs.
For more information contact SIN Colombia at

MEXICO: Bilateral collaboration in agri-tech projects
A British Embassy-Mexico agri-tech event related to the Milan Expo and the “Grown in Britain” campaign will be held in Oaxaca on the 27th of August.
Organising co-partner MIT Enterprise Forum Mexico will organise a raft of workshops, conferences and panels related to agricultural technologies to
create new & showcase existing collaborations with the UK. Key themes include Sustainability & food security. Targeted at public officials, private
sector, academics and researchers, the „Magna Carta‟ will be used to provide a framework to discuss land rights and engage with the participants.
Link for more information


MEXICO: Parliamentary Assessment on Technology,
Science and Innovation
On 10 July, the UK‟s Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology
(POST) of UK, the Science and Technology Commission from Mexican
Senate and the Science and Technology Consultative Forum (FCCyT)
signed in London a Mexico-UK “Letter of Intent” for Parliamentary
Assessment on Technology, Science and Innovation. This document was
signed at a special ceremony, witnessed by Mexico‟s Ambassador to the
UK, Gómez-Pickering and British Ambassador to Mexico, Duncan Taylor.
Jesús Ramírez, Science and Technology Commission from Mexican
Senate, José Franco, FCCyT general coordinator and Chris Tyler, POST
Director signed the agreement. The letter aims to create a Consultancy
Office that will reproduce the POST UK model in Mexico. POST will
share assessments on science and innovation issues to Mexican public
officials for the development of public policies on health, biology,
environment, innovation and technology for development.


BRAZIL: Newton partnership on Evolution Research in
South Atlantic Islands
A RCUK FAPERJ Newton funded workshop on “improving the
understanding of cryptogamic diversity and the bio-geography of the
Southern Atlantic Islands” took place at the Rio Botanical Gardens in
May. Scientists from London‟s Natural History Museum, the Institute of
Research of the Botanic Gardens of São Paulo, the University of Brasilia
(UnB), the Institute of Botany of Sao Paulo (IBt), & the Federal University
of Minas Gerais (UFMG), met for the first time to discuss scientific
partnerships of the South Atlantic Islands. Dr Julia Knights, SIN Brazil
director also attended and delivered a speech on UK Brazil Science
partnership opportunities under the Newton Fund and through FCO
Prosperity Funding. Islands are natural laboratories of evolution, and are
fundamental to understanding the biographical processes. Scientific
research aimed at understanding the bio-geographical relationships
between islands, and between the islands and the mainland, need
effective cooperation between the countries that administer the islands
(mainly Brazil and the UK In the case of the South Atlantic Islands).
Long-term partnerships, such as that of Brazil and the UK, on the South
Atlantic are becoming increasingly important, since nature can only be
understood as a whole, and does not recognise the borders created by
man. This project is invaluable in creating such a long-term research
partnership. A second meeting is planned for November, in London.
Link for more information


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BRAZIL: British Council successfully runs two Newton
Fund Calls and announces preliminary results
The British Council Brazil ranked number one in the number of proposals
received under the Newton Programme Researcher Links, which funds
bilateral scientific workshops. In total, 42 proposals were received from
more than twelve Brazilian states. In turn, the Researcher Connect call
already awarded 10 different states and is selecting ten more to receive
British Council Courses in researcher development and scientific

Newton Advanced Fellowship winners announced
The Academy of Medical Sciences, the British Academy and the Royal
Society have announced the successful award holders from the first
round of the Newton Advanced Fellowships funded by the UK
Academies in each of their partner countries. The scheme provides
established international researchers with an opportunity to develop the
research strengths and capabilities of their research groups through
training, collaboration and reciprocal visits with a partner in the UK.
Link for more information


MEXICO: University of Manchester strengthens its
presence in Mexico
A series of initiatives driven by the University of Manchester have
established fruitful relationships in research and innovation with Mexican
institutions across the country. To celebrate this, the University hosted
the event „Tiles of Knowledge‟ organised by Mexico‟s National Council of
Science and Technology and the Mexican Academy of Sciences during
6-7 July. The event focused on graphene, health, energy, women in
science, innovation, entrepreneurship and science communication.
Link for more information


BRAZIL: Brazilian Project Chosen at Grand Challenges

MEXICO: Skin regeneration through polymer in thirddegree burns

The Grand Challenges Explorations is an initiative which aims to
stimulate innovative solutions in global health and development. This is
the 14th edition, and Dr. Zilma Reis‟s project from the Federal University
of Minas Gerais project was selected. Her project‟s goal is to create a
low-cost portable device that will utilize LED light to measure the
thickness of the skin and quarantine concentration in newborns in order
to identify their age. According to Dr. Reis, her technique will be more
precise than ultrasound.

Researchers from the Chemistry faculty at the National Autonomous
University of Mexico (UNAM) have developed a polymer from gallic
acid, an organic low cost component, which is normally found in tea
leaves, oak barn, apples and blueberries. Dr Miquel Gimeno Seco,
leader of the research project, claims that the polymer can help skin
regeneration in third degree burns. He claims the antibiotic properties
could also have a potential use in the food and drugs industry. Tests
are being carried out in collaboration with the National Rehabilitation
Centre. Another potential application would be in the electronics field,
as this polymer can be used as an organic semiconductor

Link for more information (in Portuguese)

Link for more information (in Spanish)


CHILE: UK Collaboration in tackling illegal fishing in Chile
Building upon the relations cemented by two previous Satellite Applications Catapult projects funded by the Newton Fund in Chile, the Catapult is now
developing further collaboration in Chile. A project with the Chilean Maritime Agency (DIRECTEMAR) is currently under way to provide intelligence
against illegal, unlicensed and unregistered (IUU) fishing. The objective is to have an MoU signed between the Minister of Foreign Relations, Minister
Muñoz, and British Ambassador to Chile, Fiona Clouder. The Satellite Applications Catapult is working to produce a functioning operations room
demonstration for the “Our Oceans” Conference in Chile in October to generate interest and exhibit the capabilities. The Catapult will be providing
matched funding and is currently seeking a partner department within the Chilean Government. The project aims to advance and prove the
understanding and technology for detecting behavioural patterns of fishing vessels involved in IUU. It also aims to develop and deploy a pre-operational
demonstrator in Valparaiso, Chile to test and evaluate the new found understanding, and clearly demonstrate how the desired benefits of tracking IUU
can be achieved and create the business model for taking the project outputs forward into a fully operational service.

For further information please contact the Editor at the UK's Science & Innovation Network (SIN) - Brazil at
The UK's Science & Innovation Network is jointly owned by the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) and the Department of Business, Innovation
& Skills (BIS).
The information in this document is believed correct at the time of distribution and was not created by us, having been used different sources to
gather the content. However, HM Government accepts no liability for any loss or damage incurred as a result of any inaccuracies, howsoever


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